Current Ranking: 12 2014 production: 379-601 for 4,410 yards, 30 TDs, 14 INTs 2015 projections: 360-615 for 4,475 yards, 30 TDs, 14 INTs Strength of schedule: 26th, opponents allowed 328.38 points to QBs in 2014 Ryan Tannehill Current ranking: 13 2014 production: 392-590 for 4,045 yards, 27 TDs, 12 INTs 2015 projections: 370-580 for 4,200 yards, 28 TDs, 14 INTs Strength of schedule: 22nd, opponents allowed 325.71 points to QBs in 2014 Offensive Line The Giants’ offensive line has undergone some changes over the last two seasons, and the growing pains were evident in 2014. Even though Eli Manning was sacked 30 times last year, this group was far better with pass protection than run blocking. Now, an argument could be made that the porous defense put more on Manning’s shoulders to make plays to keep the Giants in games. And Eli, like his brother Peyton, have been known to quickly get rid of the ball to avoid the big hit. However, the oft-injured Rashad Jennings and rookie Andre Williams were not exactly flashing Pro Bowl skills on the field either. With veteran Marshall Newhouse coming in from Cincinnati, this young offensive line group will look to gel in 2015. Statistically the worst O-line in the NFL in 2014, this Dolphins team has nowhere to go but up. Ranked 32nd in pass protection and 31st in run blocking, this unit has a lot to improve upon. Maybe the mental side is a good place to start, as the Dolphins even ranked 29th in penalties against, essentially shooting themselves in the foot a number of times during the season. Due to the issues up front, Tannehill continued to get hammered by opposing defenses, getting sacked a whopping 46 times, which makes the numbers that he put up during the season even more surprising. With injured starters Branden Albert and Mike Pouncey returning, this group should easily climb up the rankings. Advantage: Eli Manning Running Backs Manning will be complemented in the run game by returning starter Rashad Jennings and second-year back Andre Williams. Jennings was off to a nice start in 2014 before the injury bug hit, and upon his return he just could not seem to find the rhythm that he had earlier in the year. Andre Williams looked good in spurts but seemed to be overwhelmed in his rookie campaign, and is probably best suited for a complementary role. The addition of Shane Vereen is an interesting one, as it gives Manning a quality check-down guy out of the backfield. If the running game can keep defenses honest, it only helps open things up for Manning and the passing game. Lamar Miller spearheads the rushing attack behind Ryan Tannehill. Miller had a breakout 2014 season and will be expecting a heavier workload in 2015, whether he’s running or catching the ball. Even behind a horrid offensive line, Miller excelled, which lessened the load on Ryan Tannehill’s shoulders. Damien Williams now looks to be the backup to Miller and is a decent pass-catcher in his own right. Advantage: Ryan Tannehill Wide Receivers and Tight Ends Eli Manning certainly has quite the group of pass-catchers assembled around him. New sensation Odell Beckham Jr. burst onto the scene once inserted into the lineup and was a waiver wire addition that led many owners to titles in 2014. OBJ is a supreme athlete that can separate off the line and run past defenders, and he has hands made of glue. But this consensus Top 5 WR now has the spotlight on him. Can he hold up to the pressure? Victor Cruz will be making his return from a knee injury that ended his 2014 season. If he can return to form, I see him playing more snaps out of the slot to get him the ball in space and allow him to make plays. Reuben Randle is the WR3 for the Giants and is a very solid receiver; he could be a starter on a number of NFL teams. Larry Donnell mans the tight end position. He shows flashes and is a nice red zone target, but has to develop some consistency. All in all, this is a potent group that can be tough to pin down for any NFL defense. Ryan Tannehill will be looking at an all new wide receiver corps this season. Gone are Mike Wallace and Charles Clay, replaced by Kenny Stills, Greg Jennings, DeVante Parker, and Jordan Cameron. So Tannehill will have to quickly develop a rapport with a number of players. Stills and Parker will attempt to fill the void left by Wallace, while Cameron will be filing Clay’s shoes. As a whole, the receiver group has improved slightly with the return of incumbent Jarvis Landry, while Jordan Cameron, if healthy, will be an upgrade over Charles Clay. Coming off a breakout 2014, bringing in so many new pass catchers could be a good or bad thing for such a young quarterback. Keep an eye on this situation during camp and the preseason to see how things develop between Tannehill and this group. Advantage: Eli Manning The Final Verdict Overall, I would have to give the edge to Manning based upon familiarity with his offensive skill players and the slightly better offensive line. Just one year into the implementation of Bob McAdoo’s offense has seen Eli Manning go from a QB on the looks of a decline, to a player you could possibly lean on to win a title in 2015. With the addition of Beckham Jr. into the offense, the Giants are just more explosive than what Tannehill and the Dolphins are bringing to the table by comparison. Once OBJ became a starter, Manning’s yards per attempt spiked from 6.90 to 7.54, while his yards per game ballooned as well from 220 to 309, drastic increases on both ends. Ryan Tannehill runs a more balanced offense with less of a vertical attacking passing game, as his career average of under 7.0 YPA shows. Rarely will you see Tannehill go deep downfield, as he only completed 10 passes of 29 yards plus in 2014, whereas Eli finished with 31. All in all, Eli Manning will be the more consistent QB in providing you with points on a week to week basis in 2015.
ADP Duel: Eli Manning vs. Ryan Tannehill
In this week’s ADP Duel, we take a look at who deserves that final QB1 spot in the rankings as we head into drafting season. Eli Manning (Current ADP 83) and Ryan Tannehill (Current ADP 87) are the two names that you could be looking at come draft day if you are inclined to wait on your quarterback. Both are coming off strong performances in 2014, and your decision could come down to a trust factor. Would you rather take a shot at the veteran with a new exciting weapon, or the upstart looking to continue building momentum? Doing your research and trusting your gut feeling more often than not is what pays off at the draft. Eli Manning